Southern Scenic Route: Road trip you can’t miss

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Road tripping in New Zealand is a must. It is definitely the best way to discover this amazing country.

Today I’ll take you on journey between Queenstown and Dunedin. The road is called Southern Scenic Route and it is about 600km long ride you can’t miss.

We are driving around this route pretty often as the road goes through Invercargill and it always lead us to Queenstown or Dunedin for our weekend getaways.

The road is passing through Queenstown, Fiordland (Te Anau), Western Southland, Invercargill, beautiful Catlins, Clutha and Dunedin (Moeraki, Larnach Castle).

We are so lucky to live here as these wonderful places are within short drive from our home.

Let me take you on a ride around ‘one of the world’s great undiscovered drives’, how one magazine labeled it a few years ago.

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Queenstown

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Te Anau, Fiordland

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Clifden

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Riverton

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Queens Park, Invercargill (my favourite place in town)

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Curio Bay

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Purakaunui Falls, Catlins

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Kaka Point

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Dunedin

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Baldwin St, Dunedin, the world’s steepest residential street 

There are so many great things to do along the way – short walks, boating, camping, tramping, fishing, mountain-biking – just pick your favourite activity and explore this beautiful part of the South Island.

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Sunday walk in Omaui

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Omaui Beach, New Zealand

Before we came down south everyone told us that winter here is cold, harsh and unbearable.

I wouldn’t agree.

There’s so many beautiful days like this one and it is pure satisfaction to enjoy it on one of the beaches close to town.

It’s even better when you can have those peaceful places only for yourself…

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Moeraki Boulders phenomenon

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Road trip along North Otago coast will lead you to this unusually large boulders lying at the Koekohe Beach.

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Moeraki Boulders are natural phenomenon and one of the most popular attractions here on the South Island.

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Originally formed around 60 million years ago these three meters in diameter stones are definitely great place for a bit different photo.

DSC06011According to Maori legend these boulders are gourds washed ashore from the great voyaging canoe Araiteuru when it was wrecked after the landfall in New Zealand. According to science it is result of formations created by hardening sea sediment exposed through sea erosion.

Intriguing, right?

 

Must see picturesque New Zealand lakes

Did you know there is more than 4000 lakes in this amazing country?

These are the most stunning lakes in New Zealand and there are some truly fascinating facts about them…

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Lake Te Anau, South Island

Lake Te Anau is second largest lake by surface area in New Zealand and it’s more than 4oom deep. Most of this lake is situated within Fiordland National Park and it is a must see place while traveling around Southland especially if you are planning to visit Milford Sound or you are going to walk New Zealand Great Walks.

Lake Taupo, North Island

Lake Taupo is the largest lake in New Zealand. It sits in the caldera of Taupo Volcano created by a supervolcanic eruption. Every year more than 2 million people come here to admire to this gem of the North Island.

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Lake Wanaka, South Island

Home of the probably most famous tree in the world is Lake Wanaka situated at the lower South Island in Otago region. This lake lies in valley formed by glacial erosion during the last ice age. It is a great place for adventure tourism all year around.

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Lake Pukaki, South Island

Glacial sediments fed this lake by the Tasman and Hooker Glaciers, there’s the reason for beautiful blue colour of the water. With the massive Mt Cook in the background it is not strange that Lake Pukaki found its place in the Hobbit Trilogy.

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Lake Tekapo, South Island

It doesn’t matter if you visit this lake during the day or night, it’s amazing! It gets turquoise colour from glacial dust suspended in the water.  Lake Tekapo is part of the UNESCO Dark Sky Reserve, making it the perfect spot for stargazing. I can’t describe you how tranquil this place is…

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Lake Wakatipu, South Island

Famous adventure capital Queenstown lies on the shores of Lake Wakatipu, New Zealand’s longest lake. Because of its unusual shape Lake Wakatipu has a so called ‘tide’ which causes the water to rise and fall about 10 cm every 25 minutes. Perfect scenery for the postcard, isn’t it?

Weekend getaway: Lake Te Anau

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Situated on the west coast, within Fiordland National Park, Lake Te Anau is a part of the travel itinerary of every wanderer here in New Zealand. This small town, with a population of only 2000, is a starting point for three New Zealand Great Walks (Milford Track, Kepler Track and Routeburn Track) and it is the last town on the route to one of the most famous sights – Milford Sound.

Town centre is nice but there’s nothing much to do and that’s why this is the place where travellers come to spend more time in nature, walking and exploring. For us, perfect weekend getaway.

As I already told you, weather conditions on the South Island this summer weren’t great for camping but we decided to give it a go and it was awesome! Finally we had the chance to sleep under the stars…

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Lake Te Anau is the largest lake on the South Island and second largest by surface area in New Zealand (Lake Taupo is the largest).

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One more place to check out while you are in town is Ivon Wilson Park, land planted with native trees with a beautiful small lake in the centre. Perfect picnic spot!

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Lake Henry in Ivon Wilson Park

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Quick stop at the Lake Mistletoe

This is one of the reasons why I love to live in New Zealand. You don’t have to go far away to find gorgeous spots. They are always just around the corner…